They will shine
“If you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.” ― Roald Dahl
“Your beauty should not come from outward adornment…Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit…” — I Peter 3:3-4
One year ago today, I quoted from another aviator who, like Roald Dahl, is best known to millions as a writer. The quote from Saint-Exupery is one of my all-time favorites, about the beauty of what lies hidden.
We’ve all known people whose outward appearance was not attractive in any conventional sense, but who radiate a powerfully appealing presence that draws us to them. When we come face-to-face with someone whose wonderful character shines through a seemingly flawed exterior, it up-ends our shallower notions about what matters most in a person.
The idea of inner beauty has unfortunately become a sort of cliché, the kind of thing that we talk about but don’t really believe (hence the millions of dollars spent each year on cosmetics, elective surgery and other efforts to create physical perfection). I think the endless media onslaught of air-brushed, largely mythical images of “perfect” people has desensitized us to the point that we have nearly forgotten how to really see each other.
Each person you meet is a deep well of unseen thoughts, memories, ideas and dreams. With very few exceptions, there is much that is beautiful inside, although it may be hidden at first glance. As we strive to shine forth in a way that goes beyond superficial adornment, let’s also be on the lookout for that hidden beauty inside each person we see today. Sometimes, believing is seeing.
One year ago today: